The Wizard of Oz affectionately informed the Tin Man that, “A heart is not judged by how much you love; but by how much you are loved by others.”
At the heart of social media is sharing what we love with others. Sometimes it is who we love, as uploading photos is the number-one item that people are sharing on these platforms. More authors and bloggers are turning to Twitter in order to share and promote their love of writing with the whole world.
It may take some work on your part to get going down the right path on Twitter, similar to Dorothy’s journey down the yellow brick road, but you will see great rewards for your efforts. We may not have the help of Glinda the Good Witch of the North, but there are still some magic tricks, tips and advice that will help guide us through the Twitterverse.
Quotes and anecdotes
Just as this article has done, utilizing quotes and offering amusing anecdotes will gain you a much larger following. Studies have shown that including a quote will drive 54% more retweets than any other type of post. If your followers enjoyed your quote, and they have retweeted it, they are also more likely to click through to your blog, so may their followers and so on and so on.
Shown above, statistics are a great item to include in your tweets, the more amazing, surprising, thought provoking and interesting, the better.
- Lead with a question: Did you know that 84% of people sharing on social media are supporting issues or causes that concern them?
- Make comparisons: When sharing information, Americans are swapping more newsclips, while Europeans are exchanging travel tips.
- Ask a question: If videos are so important to social media, then why are they only being shared 17% of the time?
- Make a statement: Almost 400 million people comment about their daily lives on Twitter.
Keep it short and reel ’em in…
Studies have also shown that Tweets with less than 100 characters have a higher interaction rate. While it may be challenging to write a provocative message given this restriction, most writers seem to have the talent to pull it off.
Don’t just post the title of your article, bloggers are seeing tremendous results when they put out a “teaser” on Twitter. They are leading with something intriguing or off-beat that captures reader’s attention and then lures them into the actual story. Here are a few examples of effective casts into the Twitter ocean:
- This war is far from over
- It’s not just about equality, it’s about justice
- This is revolutionizing your day-to-day life
- Scientists note amazing discovery
As you will see next, using images also captures more attention and retweets. Often the luring statement will be accompanied by an interesting photo or image. “Getting ready for Halloween” with a picture of an animal in costume will get your story shared on social media.
Visually appealing images
The more appealing and enticing your tweets, the more traffic they will drive back to your blog. Find a stunning image that somehow ties into your subject matter. Timely tweets are also very effective. For example, on the 4th of July, you might share a shot of exploding fireworks in the night sky with the caption, “The Science Behind Fireworks” about the technology used for their flight and deployment.
Ask a question, get a reader
A question inside your Tweet can gain a lot of attention and gather more engagement. Connect with tweeters on an emotional level or query them about something that almost anyone can relate with. Ask them if their computer desktop looks like a five-year-old’s bedroom floor when offering computer advice.
Make a challenge
Promoting a contest, offering a sweepstakes or making an online challenge have all seen some tremendous results. Remember the ice bucket challenge? That popular campaign raised millions of dollars for ALS research in just a few weeks. Even if you are not offering an actual prize, you can still reach thousands of new readers with a timely challenge. If you are blogging about Halloween for example, you could challenge your audience to upload photos and videos of them smashing their Jack O’ Lanterns.
Start a new trend
Group events and charity fundraisers as shown above, are great ways to gain followers and meet new friends. Sticking with the Halloween theme, using an existing, popular trend, like Zombies, gather the walking dead for a basketball game at your local park. Launch a new charity drive for disease research with a Vampire fun run. Make it a yearly event and watch the followers grow and your readership increase.
At the end of the day, and somewhere over the rainbow, remember that there are hundreds of social media sites besides Twitter that can be utilized to promote your blog, some more effective than others. For example, LinkedIn is more blog-friendly and business related than Facebook’s primarily social setting.
But that’s a whole other story.
(c) Hilary Smith